Dáil Éireann - Volume 495 - 03 November, 1998
Written Answers. - White Paper on Defence.
Ms Fitzgerald Ms Fitzgerald
208. Ms Fitzgerald asked the Minister for Defence if he will outline the members of the  strategy group which he has initiated in order to prepare for the White Paper on Defence; and the organisations and the branches of the Defence Forces represented on it. [21793/98]
Minister for Defence (Mr. M. Smith) Michael Smith
Minister for Defence (Mr. M. Smith): Proposals for the preparation of a White Paper on Defence were approved by the Government at the end of July 1998. These proposals provided for a consultative process by which all interested individuals and organisations would be invited to make submissions to the Department of Defence on any or all aspects of the White Paper. It was open to individual members of the Defence Forces to make submissions as individuals or from the perspective of their own speciality or branch. Submissions were invited by mid-October, although where an individual or organisation has indicated that their submission will be submitted in the immediate future, these will be accepted. Where deemed necessary, provision for ongoing consultations will be made, for example, in the case of the Defence Forces representative associations.
The Government also approved the establishment of an interdepartmental defence and security assessment group to consider and report on the overall context against which the White Paper should be developed. This group is representative of the Department of Defence, civil and military, and the Departments of the Taoiseach, Foreign Affairs, Finance and Justice, Equality and Law Reform. The work of this group is ongoing and, for security reasons, its outputs will be confidential.
The Department's strategic management committee, chaired by the Secretary General and comprising the Chief of Staff, the two assistant secretaries and the two deputy chiefs of staff, is overseeing the civil and military contribution which will ultimately form the White Paper.
Dáil Éireann 495 Written Answers. White Paper on Defence.